the Zabriskie Point soundtrack

Yesterday, my baby and I rolled on out to the High Desert to Pappy & Harriet’s to see Winter Flowers, the Chapin Sisters, and a bunch of really amazing bands at the Manimal Festival.

We left L.A. early, didn’t hit much traffic, and about an hour in I put in the first CD from the Zabriskie Point soundtrack, which was recorded in 68 and 69 and had songs by Pink Floyd, the Youngbloods, the Kaliedoscope (U.S.), and even, gasp, Jerry Garcia solo (yes, I have finally made the fifteen year transformation from spit-gobbing punk rocker to road-trippin’ hippie. Jerry Garcia’s solo stuff was the final threshold I needed to cross. Good morning, Starchild!).

Anyway, all the tracks sounded remarkably good coming out of my car’s speakers as we cruised through the desert, but once we got off the Interstate and were zipping up and down through boulders and burnt-out cacti, Pink Floyd’s “Come in Number 51, Your Time Is Up” started coming through my speakers.  Maaaaan, there is nothing better for boulder-hopping than a good strong case of Rick Wright’s farfisa playing and the groovy sound effects from the Space-Rock era of Pink Floyd. Fuck Dark Side, this song is where the gettin’ is good.

The next day driving back, lysergic delights now dimmed but not fully dissipated, and sleep and refreshing coolness being only distant memories, the CD worked even better, though this time it was the country-rock that really helped us take a load off. The cool, alienated feeling of these songs felt so similar to what was rattling around in my head, that it made me feel like “okay, I’m normal, this music is normal, my environment around me is at peace with my mental state, so who cares that I have to drive two hours to Los Angeles with no sleep and a belly full of gross?”

On another note: aside from the Burrito Brothers, this album seems to be where Beachwood Sparks got all their ideas.  And I love them for it.

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